God’s Portrait

by Doc Adkins

My favorite season of the year is the fall.  Football, hunting, the crispness of the season are just a few things that comes to mind when I think of the Fall.  Of course, the grandest of all is the change Fall brings. Colors that only an artist could ever imagine.

Immediately it makes us think of royalty and the greatest Painter of all–the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He is the Master Painter. Just look at His creation–the trees, the sky, and the red and gold fall season that is soon upon us.

I can picture the Lord with His golden brush painting each individual leaf on those massive trees that line the mountainsides. Red, green, brown, orange, and gold colors, so vivid that our minds and hearts swell with praise.

Venturing into the crisp, cool air of the morning is usually a welcome change from the intense summer heat.  Yet for us in our area it seemed like we had a short summer and lack of hot temperatures.

Even here the Lord has it all under control. It may be shorter or longer than what we think we’d like. Sometimes summer seems to never end and, at other times, winter seems too long. But winter, spring, summer, and fall, God wants and will have them all.

He takes His golden brush and paints up the world. He also adds His golden touch to our lives if we let Him.

He is painting our lives in His special way, so that we might add color to this dark world. What if this was a land without color? It would be boring, dull, and gloomy. One of the reasons God created the seasons was to add His golden touch.

We are to be a light to the world we live in. Hopefully, we’re bringing life to our surroundings. Let us give the Lord permission to change us, to add that splash of gold. Then we can be a welcome change in this life filled with people who need a dab of paint upon their minds and hearts. Their lives can be changed when they realize that they too are a work of art so that the Master of their soul can say; “Now you are My child, and I can display you for all the world to see.”

And God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years.”(Genesis 1:14, NIV)  “The light of the righteous shines brightly, but the lamp of the wicked is snuffed out.” (Proverbs 13:9, NIV)

Summer Time

by Doc Adkins

When we think about this word, “summertime” and separate it into two words it appears that one doesn’t go with the other.  There just doesn’t seem to be enough time at summertime.

It seems like we are always pressed for time. And that we want everything right now.

With e-mail and texting we can get some things done immediately, but not everything; and we seem to get impatient waiting for what we want.

Whether it is service at a restaurant, results from tests, answers to prayers, etc. Did you ever stop to really think about how long some people had to wait or do without in the Bible??

Here are a few examples: 

  1. It rained for forty days & nights while Noah and his family and ALL those animals rode out the waves!!  (Genesis 7) Forty days is a little less than a month and a half. Can you             imagine being cooped up in a smelly boat or going without bread & water for that long?!? I can’t!!  For most of us it’s hard not to eat for 12 hours before a blood test!                                                 
  2. Moses was up on the mountain with the Lord for forty days and nights without eating or drinking water!  (Exodus 34)
  3. Jesus was in the desert without food AND being tempted by Satan for forty days and nights!  (Mark 1)
  4. Then there was the seven year famine in Egypt; granted it was after a seven year abundance, but not everyone planned ahead (that would probably be me!).  (Genesis 41)

The questions here are these:

  • What were you doing seven years ago?
  • What will you be doing seven years from now?

I bet you didn’t have half of the friends that you have now back in 2006; and you will probably have many more by 202o.

This, for me, is the biggie — the Israelites wandered in the desert for forty YEARS! (Numbers 32 & Deuteronomy 2:7)  Now forty years is a looooong time. You guys know that I am a groovy geezer , and I have  lived almost 59 years; and some of you are barely behind me by far!  By the time most people are forty they are settled into their lives, not out wandering around trying to find it.

My point in bringing up all these events from the Bible is that God took care of all these people and HIS plan was fulfilled in HIS time.

So the next time you make a prayer request to God, be assured that he is taking care of it in HIS time; which doesn’t always coincide with our time plan!

Believe me I know that it isn’t always easy to wait, but we have to trust that God will work everything out according to    His Time.

Maybe HIS TIME is Summertime.

A heart to heart with good old Dad

by Pastor Adkins

“Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged Solomon his son, saying…” 1 Kings 2:1

June!  The beginning of summer and a wonderful time to see God at His best. It’s also the month we celebrate Father’s Day.  (Just an early reminder to my girls and maybe yours too.)  I love being a dad. I have “daddy’s girls” right where they want me and I wouldn’t want to be any place else.  

When we are young most of us don’t see the importance of our parent’s advice whether it is fatherly or motherly. Sometimes it is only when we get a little older that we see that a lot of what advice they have given to us makes sense.

The devotional for this month comes from the sermon I have been working on for Father’s day and maybe you will enjoy a “sneak preview” of our celebration!

In 1 Kings 2:1-10, we see some advice, a charge really, that David gave to his son Solomon before David died. There’s so many good things that he says in this passage. Good advice whether you are a “momma’s boy” or “daddy’s girl”.

  • Be Strong and manly. (vs. 2)
    David knew he was dying so I guess it makes sense that he told his son to be strong. I’m sure the women don’t want to be manly or “shew thyself a man” as the verse says but we can take from this to be the best godly woman you are able to be and teach the daughters to be godly women.
  • Keep the charge of the Lord(vs. 3, 4)
    In these verses David encourages Solomon to strive to do everything he can to keep his life centered on the Lord. He talks about walking in His ways, keeping His statutes, His commandments, His judgments, and His testimonies.

    David had some ups and downs in his own spiritual life so he knew the importance of a close relationship with the Lord.

  • Show wisdom. (vs. 5, 6)
    David encourages Solomon to use wisdom when dealing with Joab and the things that specific situation entailed in verses 5 and 6.

    I think wisdom is something we all want for our children. I know I want my girls to use wisdom in their choices and decisions.

  • Show kindness. (vs. 7)
    In verse 7 David urges Solomon to show kindness to the sons of Barzillai who had shown kindness to him. Kindness is one of those things that lack in so many people today. I know raising kind children should be one of our goals.
  • Judge well. (vs. 8,9)
    David reminds Solomon of how to deal with Shimei, a man whose life David had spared at one point and time. You really have to go back and read through 2 Samuel 16 and 19 to really understand what the whole situation was about. I’m not going into detail here but judging and carrying out judgment was to be a big part of Solomon’s role as King.

    Even in our daily lives knowing how to judge in wisdom is so important. Also knowing that sometimes punishment has to be carried out is important as well.

Conclusion:
When we go on down to verse 10 of 1 Kings 2, we see that David died so these things he said to Solomon were probably some of the last words David spoke.

I think that David’s words to Solomon in this passage ended up being one of the most enduring father-son talks. This was right before David’s death and it was from the heart. David had learned many lessons in his life and I think he wanted his son, Solomon, to learn to keep his life in tune with the Lord so that his life would be the best it could be.

“Thus David the son of Jesse reigned over all Israel. And the time that he reigned over Israel was forty years; seven years reigned he in Hebron, and thirty and three years reigned he in Jerusalem. And he died in a good old age, full of days, riches, and honor: and Solomon his son reigned in his stead.” 1 Chronicles 29:26, 27

So, do you take what your Heavenly Father tells you to heart?